Published: July 5th 2008July 5th 2008
(June 13th) We got Friday off this week, as the previous week we had worked 6 days in a row. This trip was taken by everyone (as most of the weekend excursions are optional, since it's extra money to go), as we were told that this is not a place to miss. We visited the Siracuse museum, where Pietro actually helped organize a number of the displays in the Sicilian archaeology collections they had there, as well as participating in some of the excavations. There are no pictures allowed here either. We spent about 2 hours here, and then we were lead to another site being excavated by another friend of Pietro's. It was a temple site right in the middle of the city of Siracuse. It was very interesting...but many of us were losing interest after about 20 minutes because we hadn't been able to get anything to eat since we left that morning, and it was getting very hot out (some people also didn't have any water on them). After about 45 minutes at this site, we walked to the restaurant that we were going to eat for lunch. That...was interesting. As what has been the theme of many
of group meals out, we don't get the option to order ourselves since we are such a large group, so they order for us. Problem: we have one vegetarian, a number of people who do not like fish (which is very commonly served as one of the courses in Sicily), and many of us were by this time sick of eggplant (as our cook had been somehow fitting it into our dinners a few times a week up to this point). So, it is very hard to order for a group and please everyone. Many people ended up being unhappy. I was only unhappy because I opted out of the dessert, since I thought it wasn't included in our meal. Ends up it was, and it was a vanilla gelato with strawberries. Again, lack of communication theme of the trip. : ( boo
We then went to another archaeological site, Thapsos. This site is on the coast, and was actually used during World War II as a coastal location. The archaeological site here is a Middle Bronze Age site (1400 and 1200 BCE) consisting of various round huts. Right along the coast (and some of which, is actually in the
water now) is a necropolis containing some 450 burial chambers. These consist of small man-made hollows with an entryway. The burial chambers are round with conical ceilings: in some, the walls accommodate shallow niches in which the grave goods were deposited. These chambers were used for extended groups of people (complete families and dependents), and were designed to serve several generations. It was a beautiful day to go here, and the water was gorgeous.
There are more photos below